This is a very important and significant building in the town of Sorell and is a rare surviving very early building in the main street that indicates the scale of development in the early township of Sorell.
The building is known as “David Hildyard’s House” or the “Plough & Harrow Inn”. It is said to have been an 1827 public house for which Daniel Long had gained a license in the mid 1820’s. However, an 1832 town plan shows that Long had premises on the corner of Gordon & Coles streets and that there was no building on the site at 8 Gordon Street at that particular time.
A 1839 plan notes that the allotment was being used as a brickyard while an 1842 plan shows a building on the site which had been granted to David Hildyard. In the same year, Hildyard is recorded as living in a brick house in Gordon Street. So it can be assumed that the building was probably erected between 1839 & 1842. It has been indicated that the building was later used as a hotel and this may be the source of the “Plough & Harrow Inn” name with David Hildyard being recorded as having held a publican’s license at some stage.
The building is a largely intact Colonial Georgian 2 storey house which retains it setting. The exterior is painted over the face brick with a symmetrical layout featuring a central door and pairs of 6 pane windows on either side. The building has typical Georgian detailing with shaped brick lentils to openings and brick chimneys.
The building was once in poor condition but has been lovingly repainted. It is a well detailed and finely scaled building of modest proportion and it provides a good contrast to the more substantial buildings that have tended to survive from the early town settlement years. It was last sold in 1987 and appears to remain a private residence to this day.
Main Text & Information Source –
“Sorell Heritage Study – Site Inventory Vol 5” – Sorell Municipal Council 1996